( BCGEU job action. James Coccola)

The BC General Employees’ Union (BCGEU) has halted strike action as talks resume with the province.

According to the BCGEU, the committee returned to the bargaining table with the BC Public Service Agency (PSA) last Thursday and made significant progress. 

The two sides will continue to meet throughout the week, hoping to finalize a tentative agreement.

The union’s overtime ban has also ended – effective immediately, with preparations underway to stand down picket lines at BC Liquor Distribution Branch locations.

The union is the province’s largest public sector union representing employees in an array of fields including wildfire fighters, social workers, sheriffs and correctional officers.

The most recent collective agreement between the union and PSA expired on April 1st and while discussions began earlier this year, talks stalled in July.

In June, 95% of the union members voted in favour of job action.

The BCGEU is asking for a 5% pay boost each year for two years or a raise to match the cost of living, whichever is higher.

Picket lines went up outside BC Liquor Distribution Branch centres in Delta, Richmond and Kamloops, as well as the wholesale customer centre here in Victoria on August 22nd.

Both parties agreed to a media blackout and no further comment will be made.

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